George W. Bush photo

Remarks Following a Cabinet Meeting

March 19, 2002

Thank you all for coming. We've had a very good Cabinet meeting. I want to thank my members of the Cabinet for discussing a variety of topics. I heard from the Secretary of State about the Vice President's visit and the Zinni mission. So we're making progress. We heard, of course, from the Secretary of Defense about our progress in the war on terror, and I appreciate his leadership and the bravery of the military.

We talked about a lot of other issues. One thing I want to urge the Senate to do is to pass 245(i). This bill passed the House, and it now needs to pass the Senate. It is a bill which enhances our border security and, at the same time, says that if someone's living here legally, they won't have to leave the country in order to stay with their family. In other words, they won't have to leave the country, apply, and then come back to be with their family. We believe in family values. We believe good policy keeps families together. The House agreed with us, and the Senate ought to act. The Senate ought to get this done and particularly soon.

I'm going to Mexico. I want to show our friends the Mexicans that we are compassionate about people who live here on a legal basis, that we don't disrupt the families for people who are here legally. So I think it's going to require some leadership in the Senate, and I look forward to seeing the Senate get this done soon.

And I thank you all for coming today.

NOTE: The President spoke at 3:08 p.m. in the Cabinet Room at the White House. In his remarks, he referred to U.S. Special Envoy to the Middle East Gen. Anthony Zinni, USMC (Ret.); and section 245(i) of the Immigration and Nationality Act, which expired April 30, 2001. A tape was not available for verification of the content of these remarks.

George W. Bush, Remarks Following a Cabinet Meeting Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

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